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Monday, July 2, 2012

One Man's Treasure by Nicole Kimberling

One Man's Treasure by Nicole Kimberling
Publisher: Loose Id
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (112 pgs)
Other: M/M, Anal Play
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Cactus

Four years ago, Peter Fontaine made a name for himself as Bellingham, Washington's premiere investigative reporter. Since then he's got an award, a cat and good-looking artist to come home to every night.

Nick Olson, Peter's long-suffering lover has a lot of reasons for wanting Peter to stop investigating the many and varied crimes committed in the City of Subdued Excitement. Peter's nasty habit of getting held at gunpoint by lunatics has Nick wondering if any story is worth losing the man he's decided to “everything-but-marry.”

But when a famous ceramic artist drops dead at the Bellingham Farmer's Market, Nick agrees to help Peter dig deep to unearth the secret rivalries and dirty deeds done at Green Goddess Farms. And then they're going to have another long talk about these bad habits of Peter's.

A man dies tragically right in front of Peter so of course he has to investigate it, right? Peter can’t help his reporter’s curiosity. He also thinks everyone else is crazy if they don’t have the same insatiable need to figure out secrets. This time he even has a cop asking him to poke around the close knit organic market atmosphere, so Peter’s questions are practically sanctioned by law. Combined with a madcap best friend and long suffering boyfriend, Peter’s latest investigation is likely to almost get him killed, but that’s the fun of it.

One Man’s Treasure is the fourth book in the Bellingham Mystery series by Ms. Kimberling. It’s easily a stand alone, though, for those just picking up the series. There are enough details and background to understand the connections and dynamics while each novella offers a new death/mystery to solve. This time Peter is poking into the death of Nick’s artist friend. Peter is as irrepressible and charming as always. He’s somewhat obnoxious if you actually stop and think about all the mistakes and problems he causes on a near daily basis, but instead his wit and charm win you over. His habit of rewriting mundane details into scary thriller book language is only one of his many fun quirks.

The murder itself is well developed. There are more than enough hints to figure out the culprit ahead of time, and to know exactly how Peter will almost die, but the clean writing and descriptive language make you want to ride along anyway. Peter’s relationship to Nick is examined and moves ahead once more, showing that even a happy couple with a very solid relationship can have issues that need to be examined and dealt with. Nick is a bit too patient and long suffering – he comes across as a near saint putting up with all of Peter’s antics. Peter’s best friend as well is more of a caricature than a fully three dimensional character but she adds humor and purpose to some of Peter’s ridiculousness so she’s definitely a welcome addition to scenes.

Overall this is a fun and entertaining new addition to the series. One that can be picked up by anyone and I’d recommend it for both fans and newcomers. The crisp writing and evocative imagery are easily worth the cost and time with this one.

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